Which bamboo is best for privacy screens? [Fargesia Vs Phyllostachys]

Homeowners and gardeners are wondering which bamboo plant would be most suited for screening purposes.

Some bamboo plants, called running bamboo plants, can become a serious problem if planted in the garden without a barrier.

There are many cultivars of running and clump-forming bamboo. The common ones are the Phyllostachys and Fargesia bamboo plants.

So, which bamboo plants is best for privacy screens? 

best bamboo plants for screen UK

Which bamboo is best for privacy screens?

Many gardeners play it safe and opt for the clump-forming Fargesia over Phyllostachys. 

The Fargesia bamboo plants hold more foliage which offers more density for screening whereas the Phyllostachys is more about the stem colour and height.

Different Fargesia cultivars will produce different thicknesses and heights so it really depends on your need for screening.

For Fargesias, the Fargesia Umbrella bamboo plants produce thick screens and Fargesia Robusta cultivars are mostly tall. 

Some Phyllostachys bamboo plants like the Black Bamboo (Phyllostachys nigra) and Scottish Bamboo (Phyllostachy Humilis) are running bamboos but behave like clump-forming bamboos in cooler climates.

Bamboo charm and elegance

The charm of the foliage and elegance is quickly lost when you see roots and shoots emerging in all parts of the garden, interfering with the built structures. 

Even worst when they cross the boundary over to the neighbour's side and cause some 'neighbourly discussions'.

Most Phyllostachys bamboo plants have running rhizomes that spread. But, there are cost-effective ways to grow running bamboo for screening.

You can still enjoy the charm and elegance of these beautiful plants by building a rhizome barrier before growing them. 

Use bamboo root barriers

When growing the running bamboo plants within barriers you won't have problems with them invading all parts of the garden, built structures and neighbour's side.

There are many different ways to create bamboo barriers from growing bamboo in planter boxes, pots and containers to building raised structures and securing bamboo roots within roots barriers.

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